Women's Golf Head To Final Regular-Season Event, PING/ASU Invitational at Tempe
April 2, 2002
Now On The Tee: Greg Allen's Wildcat golf squad heads to Tempe, Ariz., for its final regular-season competition, the 30th annual PING/ASU Invitational at Karsten Golf Course, on April 5-7. Eighteen holes will be played each day, with tee times beginning at 8 a.m. on Friday and Saturday and an 8 a.m. shotgun start for Sunday's final round.
Some Tournament Themes: The Wildcats continue their hunt for this season's first team championship at the PING/ASU Invitational... Arizona will welcome back sophomore sensation Lorena Ochoa after a three-week stint on the LPGA that concluded Sunday with an eighth place finish at the Kraft Nabisco Championship... Greg Allen will continue to tweak the lineup in preparation for the postseason as Arizona will field its sixth different lineup in eight tournaments... Health and readiness for the significance-laden postseason events loom as the Wildcats' priorities in this final regular-season tournament... Ochoa carries two streaks into this weekend's tournament, her personal string of six consecutive individual wins and the University of Arizona's mark of also taking the team championship when a Wildcat individual earns medalist honors... The feat occured twice, in 1997 and 2000.
Course: The 54-hole tournament will be held at the Karsten Golf Course on the campus of Arizona State University. Karsten will play to a par of 72 and a yardage of 6,122 for the tournament.
The Field: This year's PING/ASU Invitational will feature 15 teams, 13 of which are ranked in the top 50 in the March 27 edition of the Golfweek/Sagarin performance index. The field includes 10 of the top 25 teams in the country.
Teams Scheduled to Compete: Arizona, Arizona State, California, Mew Mexico, New Mexico State, Oregon, Oregon State, San Jose State, Southern California, Stanford, Texas, Texas Christian, Tulsa, UCLA and Washington.
Golfer Year Avg. Top 10/20 Low Rnd. Events
Lorena Ochoa So. 69.76 6/0 66 6
Laura Myerscough Jr. 76.20 1/1 72 7
Cristina Baena Sr. 78.16 0/0 74 2
Miriam Kraschinski Fr. 78.33 0/0 75 6
Anne Lee Jr. 78.05 0/1 71 6
Cathie Williamson* Sr. 81.06 0/0 72 5
* will compete as an individual
Last Time Out at the Betsy Rawls Longhorn Invitational: The Arizona women's golf team battled harsh weather, cold temperatures and rain during all three rounds of the Betsy Rawls Longhorn Invitational to finish in ninth place at 966. Duke won the tournament championship with a three-round team total of 68-over-par 920. Individually, Janice Olivencia of Texas claimed medalist honors with a 54-hole score of 5-over 218. The Wildcats were without top-ranked sophomore Lorena Ochoa, who missed the tournament due to her participation in the LPGA's Welch's/Circle K Championships in Tucson. Ochoa finished in fifth place in the LPGA event. Three Arizona golfers wrapped up play in the Betsy Rawls Longhorn Invitational at 26-over-par 239 to share 24th place. Junior Laura Myerscough, senior Cristina Baena and freshman Miriam Kraschinski all posted identical 54-hole scores to finish in 24th. Freshman Mar Garcia battled injury and wound up in a tie for 54th place in just her second collegiate tournament, completing play at 249. Senior Cathie Williamson completed the Arizona lineup and took 67th place at 256.
Last Year at the PING/ASU Invitational: Arizona posted a team-total 896 to finish in a tie for fourth place at the PING/ASU Invitational. Entering the final round with a three-stroke lead, the Wildcats posted a team total of 299 (+11) and fell into a fourth-place tie at 896 with Stanford. No UA player shot better than 73 in the final round. USC won the event with a three-round total of 889, four strokes in front of tournament-host Arizona State. TCU finished third at 895. Individually, freshman Lorena Ochoa was Arizona's top golfer, finishing in a tie for third place at 218 (+2). Ochoa, who held a one-shot lead heading into Sunday final round, posted a 75 and finished two strokes off the pace of Stanford's Stepahanie Keever, who carded a final-round 69 to finish at 216 (E). Also competing for Arizona was Natalie Gulbis, who finished tied for 22nd place at 225 (+9), Laura Myerscough, who finished tied for 35th at 227 (+11), Cristina Baena, who finished tied for 44th at 230 (+14) and Anne Lee, who finished tied for 49rd place at 232 (+16). Two Wildcat golfers also competed as individuals in the event. Christelle Cuzon finished tied for 44th place at 230 (+14) and Christina Monteiro finished in 81st place at 249 (+33).
All-Time the PING/ASU Invitational: The Arizona Wildcats have competed in the annual tournament in Tempe, Ariz., every year but two in records dating to the 1986-1987 season. The 1992 and 1996 ASU-hosted tournaments are the only ones in which Arizona did not compete. During that stretch, the Wildcats' average finish was fourth place, Arizona has never finished worse than seventh in the event. On two occasions the Wildcats have won the event--in 2000 and 1997. Two Wildcats have claimed medalist honors at the ASU event, Jenna Daniels in 2000 and Marisa Baena in 1997--both led Arizona to team victories as well.
Filling out the Lineup Card: Head coach Greg Allen has used five different lineups in Arizona's seven tournaments thus far this year, due to injury, inconsistency and Ochoa's LPGA participation. This week's event will up those numbers to six different combinations in eight tournaments. Junior Laura Myerscough is the only Wildcat golfer to have competed in each event this season as Allen continues to search for the winning recipe.
Playing with the Pros: Sophomore Lorena Ochoa received sponsor exemptions to participate in the first three LPGA tournaments held in the continental United States this season, PING Banner Health, Welch's/Circle K Championship and the Kraft Nabisco Championship. Last week, in the Kraft Nabisco Championship, the first LPGA major of the season, the 5-foot-7-inch star from Guadalajara, Mexico, claimed eighth place at 3-under 285. Ochoa was in contention for the title, pulling within three strokes of leader and eventual champion Annika Sorenstam, a former Wildcat, with six holes to play. She also tied for 37th at the PING Banner Health held in Phoenix March 14-17 after posting a total of 5-over-par 293. Ochoa competed in the 2002 Welch's/Circle K Championship March 21-24 where she tied for fifth place at 14-under-par. Her two top-10 finishes this year bring her career total as an amateur in LPGA events to three.
Grand Openings: Senior Cristina Baena and freshman Mar Garcia opened their season with impressive performances at the Wildcat Invitational in February. Garcia provided a bright glimpse into the future for her and the rest of Greg Allen's Wildcats. She tied for 13th place with a 54-hole total of 5-over-par 221, which included a final-round of 2-under 70. Baena returned from off-season wrist surgery and used a pair of 2-over 74s as bookends to claim a tie for 42nd place.
Record-Setter: By winning medalist honors at the Wildcat Invitational, Lorena Ochoa became the most accomplished golfer in UA history. The win brought her career total of individual tournament victories to 10, eclipsing the mark of nine held by Marisa Baena who won nine titles from 1996-1998.
Arizona Championship Streak: The Wildcats have won a team tournament every year for six consecutive seasons, but have yet to carry that mark into this season. The last Arizona team to go winless was the 1994-95 squad, which had five top-five finishes. During the six-season streak, Arizona has produced two national championship teams, four Pac-10 titles, four NCAA West Regional titles and 33 total tournament championships. Included in that stretch was the 1999-2000 team that won eight consecutive events.
Career Wins: The 10 career victories by Lorena Ochoa puts her in fourth on an unofficial all-time career victories list. Juli Inkster of San Jose State ranks first on the list with 17 career wins in her three collegiate seasons. The list is unofficial since the NCAA does not keep official records for women's golf. If a golfer is missing from the list, contact Arizona women's golf SID Joe Mazzeo at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oregon Trail Proves Successful for Lee: Trysting Tree Golf Club in Corvallis, Ore., has been the site of two of junior Anne Lee's career-best rounds. At the Oregon State Invitational held at Trysting Tree in early October, Lee fired a 1-under-par 71 to set a new career low. The mark eclipsed her old personal best of even-par 72, which she shot on two occasions. Most recently, Lee carded a 72 at Trysting Tree during the Wildcats' 20-stroke victory at the NCAA West Regional. The junior from Northridge, Calif., also shot 72 at the 2001 Wildcat Invitational.
Baena Back in Action: Senior Cristina Baena made her season debut at the WIldcat Invitational, after missing the entire fall season and the first event of the spring season due to wrist surgery. The fourth-year senior had three top-10 finishes in 2000-01.
Garcia Comes Aboard: Upon enrolling in classes at UA at the beginning of the spring semester, freshman Mar Garcia, the younger sister of PGA Tour and European PGA Tour star Sergio Garcia, became eligible to compete for the Wildcats. Garcia, a 5-foot-5-inch freshman from Castellon, Spain, hails from a family full of accomplished golfers. In addition to her brother Sergio, her father Victor competes on the Senior PGA Tour and another brother, also named Victor, played golf at Francis Marion University. Her accomplishments include a first-place performance in the 21 and under group at the 1999 Spanish Junior.
Re-Writing The Record Books: Ochoa's three-round total at the Oregon State Invitational of 10-under-par 206 set a new Arizona record for individual 54-hole score. The previous mark of 207 was shared by former Wildcat standouts Leta Lindley (Feb. 24-25, 1992, Arizona Inv., Randolph North GC), Jenna Daniels (April 7-9, 2000, PING/ASU Inv., Karsten GC) and Natalie Gulbis (May 10-12, 2001, Pac-10 Chmps., Karsten GC).
Sister, Sister: With freshman Miriam Kraschinski joining the squad, the Wildcats added another pair of sisters to the Arizona golf family. Miriam joins her sophomore sister Julia in the program. They join current Wildcat Cristina Baena and her sister, LPGA star Marisa, as the only siblings to have competed for Arizona.
Wildcat Coaching Staff: Now in his second year with the Arizona golf program, Greg Allen has led the team to six tournament championships, including the 2001 Pac-10 Conference Championship and a 20-stroke victory at the 2001 NCAA West Regional. Last summer, he paired with Arizona men's head coach Rick LaRose to coach the United States team to victory in 2001 U.S.-Japan Collegiate Matches. Allen, who was hired in July 2000, came to the University of Arizona from Texas where he was the assistant coach for the Longhorns' men's golf team. Allen helped guide Texas to the 1999-2000 NCAA Central Region championship and a fifth-place finish at the NCAA Championships. Prior to coaching at Texas, Allen served as Director of Tournament Operations with the American Junior Golf Association. Allen graduated from Murray State University in 1993. He is assisted by Holly Carriker, who joined the staff in September 2001. Carriker competed collegiately at USC for two years before transferring to Texas, where she completed her remaining eligibility. The Texas native is a member of the LPGA's Teaching & Club Professional Division.
NCAA FALL PREVIEW - 8th PlaceSept. 24-26, Auburn, Wash.: Sophomore Lorena Ochoa won her first tournament championship of the season at the NCAA Fall Preview, after tournament officials cancelled the third round due to rain and determined the 36-hole totals would be the final results. The Wildcats finished in 11th place as a team with a two-round total of 606. Ochoa used consecutive sub-par rounds of 71 and 68 to claim her first title of the season with a two-round total of 5-under-par 139. The 2001 NCAA Fall Preview marks Ochoa's fifth career championship. Junior Laura Myerscough wrapped up play with a two-round total of 8-over-par 152, while junior Anne Lee shot a two-round score of 11-over-par 155. Myerscough and Lee finished tied for 41st and 64th places, respectively. Also scoring for Arizona were the Kraschinski sisters. Freshman Miriam Kraschinski tied for 93rd, while junior Julia finished in 118th place.
OREGON STATE INVITATIONAL - 2nd PlaceOct. 8-10, Corvallis, Ore.: Sophomore Lorena Ochoa won individual medalist honors for the sixth time in her career and the second time of the season at the Oregon State Invitational after posting a career-best 54-hole total of 10-under-par 206. Arizona finished tied with tournament champion California at 18-over-par 882, but took second place by virtue of the NCAA tie-break policy. The Wildcats closed action at the Oregon State Invitational, held at Trysting Tree Golf Club, with a third-round of 17-over-par 305. Despite posting identical scores, California was awarded first place over Arizona as the low score from each team's fifth player broke the tie. Ochoa used rounds of 72, 67 and 67 to finish nine strokes ahead of Anne Walker and Sarah Huarte of California and Kim Kouwabunpat of Stanford, who tied for second at 1-under-par 215. Earning top-15 finishes for Arizona were juniors Laura Myerscough and Anne Lee. Myerscough completed play tied for 10th place, while Lee tied for 14th.
HAWAII FALL INVITATIONAL - 2nd PlaceOct. 30-31, Honolulu, Hawaii: The fourth-ranked Wildcats claimed second place after finishing 21 strokes behind tournament champion New Mexico at the Hawaii Fall Invitational. Sophomore Lorena Ochoa won her third tournament championship of the season as she closed action at 2-over-par 218. Arizona shot a final-round 302, its best round of the 54-hole tournament. California posted a three-round team total of 911 to wrap up the tournament six strokes back of the Wildcats in third place. The win was the seventh of Ochoa's career. The Guadalajara, Mexico, native's streak of consecutive top-three finishes reached 12 tournaments after competing in Hawaii. Junior Laura Myerscough posted another top-15 finish, closing the tournament at 12-over-par 228 to tie for 14th. Junior Anne Lee, from Northridge, Calif., finished tied for 22nd place at 14-over-par 230. Also scoring for Arizona were senior Cathie Williamson and freshman Miriam Kraschinski. Williamson tied for 36th, while Kraschinski took 54th place.
AUBURN TIGER-DERBY INVITATIONAL - 4th PlaceNov. 9-11, Auburn, Ala.: Lorena Ochoa continued her dominant sophomore season by winning her fourth consecutive tournament as she carded a final-round 70 to finish six strokes ahead of Georgia's Summer Sirmons and Tennessee's Young-A Yang at the Auburn Tiger-Derby Invitational. Arizona finished fourth at 35-over-par 899. Georgia took first place with a three-day team total of 21-over-par 885. Eight of the top-10 ranked teams in the nation competed in the 54-hole tournament. Ochoa's six-stroke victory gives her eight career wins. The final round saw Ochoa shoot par or better for the ninth time in 11 rounds this season. The sophomore posted a 54-hole total of 6-under-par 210. Junior Anne Lee contributed to the Wildcats' success with a three-round score of 12-over-par 228, good for a tie for 24th place. Laura Myerscough, a junior from Charleston, Ill., closed the tournament tied for 21st place at 11-over-par. Freshman Miriam Kraschinski tied for 39th place at 18-over-par, while junior Julia Kraschinski tied for 52nd at 26-over-par. Senior Cathie Williamson competed as an individual and tied for 60th place.
TRW Regional Challenge - 6th PlaceFeb. 11-13, Palos Verdes, Calif.: Lorena Ochoa, the top-rated golfer in the nation, extended her streak of consecutive tournament victories to five as she earned medalist honors for the ninth time in her career at the TRW Regional Challenge at Palos Verdes Golf Club. Ochoa posted a score of 7-under-par 206, six strokes ahead of second-place finisher Christi Cano of Oklahoma State. Ochoa's three-round score shattered the previous tournament record at the TRW Regional Challenge by six strokes. The old record of 212 was set in 1998 by Filippa Hemersson of Tulsa and in 2000 by Shauna Estes of Georgia. With her performance, the 5-foot-5-inch phenom lowered her scoring average to 69.93, well below her record-setting average of 71.56 from her freshman season. Ochoa's dominant performance was not enough, however, to lead Arizona to the team title. No. 2 Tulsa finished in first place with a three-day team total of 870. The Wildcats finished in sixth place, with a team score of 907. Freshman Miriam Kraschinski wrapped up play tied for 43rd place with a three-round total of 232. Junior Laura Myerscough closed the tournament tied for 36th place. Juniors Julia Kraschinski and Anne Lee finished in 78th and 86th places, respectively.
WILDCAT INVITATIONAL - 2nd PlaceFeb. 25-26, Tucson, Ariz.: Lorena Ochoa broke the University of Arizona record for most career championships when she won her 10th collegiate tournament at the Wildcat Invitational. The sophomore from Guadalajara, Mexico, had competed in only 16 scoring events at the time, Ochoa used a final-round 71 to complete the tournament at 9-under-par 207. Arizona equaled its best finish of the season, posting a 19-over-par team total of 883 to claim a tie with Auburn for second. Duke took the team championship with a 54-hole team score of 12-over-par 876. Perhaps the most impressive performance for the Wildcats was that of Mar Garcia in her first collegiate tournament and first competitive tournament in nearly a year. The freshman from Castellon, Spain, took 13th place at 5-over-par 221. Senior Cristina Baena, also competing in her first tournament of the season, finished in a tie for 42nd place at 14-over-par 230. Also finishing in the top 25 for Arizona was junior Laura Myerscough, who completed play at nine-over-par 225. Junior Julia Kraschinski rounded out the Wildcat lineup, tying for 93rd place.
BETSY RAWLS LONGHORN INVITATIONAL - 9th PlaceMarch 25-26, Austin, Texas: The Arizona women's golf team battled harsh weather, cold temperatures and rain during all three rounds of the Betsy Rawls Longhorn Invitational to finish in ninth place at 966. Duke won the tournament championship with a three-round team total of 68-over-par 920. Individually, Janice Olivencia of Texas claimed medalist honors with a 54-hole score of 5-over 218. The Wildcats were without top-ranked sophomore Lorena Ochoa, who missed the tournament due to her participation in the LPGA's Welch's/Circle K Championships in Tucson. Ochoa finished in fifth place in the LPGA event. Three Arizona golfers wrapped up play in the Betsy Rawls Longhorn Invitational at 26-over-par 239 to share 24th place. Junior Laura Myerscough, senior Cristina Baena and freshman Miriam Kraschinski all posted identical 54-hole scores to finish in 24th. Freshman Mar Garcia battled injury and wound up in a tie for 54th place in just her second collegiate tournament, completing play at 249. Senior Cathie Williamson completed the Arizona lineup and took 67th place at 256.